Anal cancer therapeutic pipeline analysis is expected to increase owing to increasing incidence globally, majorly in older adults. Major factors driving towards the pipeline growth for anal cancer include growing rate of sexually transmitted diseases and aging population. Additionally, increasing awareness regarding health issues among people is another major factor fueling the pipeline growth for anal cancer. According to American Cancer Society, the prevalence of anal cancer has increased with increasing older population. Around 8,200 new cases for anal cancer are estimated to be diagnosed with in 2017, in the U.S., out of which 5,250 cases are estimated to be present in women and 2,950 are estimated to be present in men. The disease affecting females more commonly as compared to the males.
Anal cancer is rare type of cancer which develops tumor in the anus as a result of abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells. It is very much different from the common colon or rectal cancers. It is more prevalent among people with a weak immune system and in women and men who receive undergo intercourse. The symptoms of anal cancer include rectal bleeding, lumps around anus, pain and mucus discharge or jelly-like discharge from anus. Women can also experience vaginal dryness and lower back pain. The risk factors associated with anal cancer are human papilloma virus infection, weakened immune system, increasing age, smoking and anal lesions. It can be diagnosed by rectal examination, biopsy, CT scan, MRI scan and ultrasound scan. Anal cancer can be treated by surgery, resection, abdominoperineal resection, chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., is in the process of introducing a compound, Pembrolizumab. The compound is in Phase II clinical stage, and is being tested for its safety and efficacy in a 36-week trial. Pembrolizumab is a programmed cell death 1 ligand 2 protein inhibitor and is given intravenouly. Advaxis, Inc., is also testing on safety and efficacy of compound - ADXS11-001, which is in Phase II stage of development. Eli Lilly and Company, is developing a compound Prexasertib which is being tested for its safety and efficacy for patients diagnosed with anal squamous cell carcinoma. Prexasertib is a checkpoint kinase 1 inhibitor. Oryx GmbH & Co. KG, is developing a compound, P16_37-63 peptide combined with Montanide ISA-51 VG, which is in Phase I clinical development stage. P16_37-63 peptide combined with Montanide ISA-51 VG is an immunostimulant and is being developed with subcutaneous route of administration. ISA Pharmaceuticals B.V., is in the process of developing a compound HPV-16 vaccine, which is an immunostimulant and is currently in Phase I/II. It is therapeutic vaccination against human papillomavirus type 16 for the treatment of anal intraepithelial neoplasia in HIV positive men.
Some of the key having a pipeline of anal cancer therapeutics include Advaxis, Inc., Amgen Inc., Atara Biotherapeutics Inc, Bayer AG, Cell Medica Ltd., Eli Lilly and Company, Genticel S.A., ISA Pharmaceuticals B.V., Merck & Co Inc, Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc., Novartis AG, Ono Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Oryx GmbH & Co. KG, PDS Biotechnology Corporation, Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company Ltd., Taiwan Liposome Company, Ltd.